Former Ranger, Miracle On Ice star Mark Pavelich dies at 63

Mark Pavelich, known as one of the stars of the 1980 Miracle On Ice and former Ranger, has died at the age of 63. After winning gold in 1980, Pavelich joined the Rangers and spent five seasons on Broadway. Pavelich had a pair of 30 goal seasons and a pair of 20 goal seasons while in blue.

After his retirement, Pavelich was struggling with mental health issues, and had run-ins with his neighbors. Pavelich had many concussions throughout his playing days, and his struggles later in life have been attributed to this by his family.

The Rangers released a statement:

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  • That is sad, so sad. I loved watching those Herb Brooks teams with Pavelich … “Shoot the puck Barry!”. RIP Mark.

  • Tragic story. Pavelich was competitive and a leader on the ice. Head injuries are cumulative and took a toll on his life. RIP Mark.

  • There are trademark sporting events that we all remember. For me:

    1969 Mets’ World Series.
    1994 Rangers’ Cup, of course.
    Less important to the general public: The Affirmed/Alydar Belmont Stakes and Secretariat’s romp in the same race, a few years earlier.

    But there was nothing more “important” than the 1980 USA win over the Russians, at that time. For so many reasons.

    Mark was a big part of that team, similar to the Rangers, when he was here. Just a tenacious player. A “I have to play above my stature” type of player. And boy, did he do that.

    His story is way too common. The NHL MUST, FINALLY, put an end to headshots and crack down severely on such infractions. At least the NFL is TRYING to protect their players. The NHL, not so much. And what’s with the Players’ Assoc? The Ovi spear to Fredrickson’s groin was met with a $5,000 fine. Laughable.

    CTE is a thing. All sports need to do the things necessary to try and minimize where it can. Mark, obviously succumbed to some sort of CTE disorder. Or from related complications.

    Thank you Mark for giving me the greatest sports’ memory of my time. And thank you for your tremendous play as a Ranger. It was fun to watch.

    RIP. 🙁

    • Couldn’t say it better my friend. The NHL needs to crack down on these infractions, especially where you can infer INTENT. Players like Ovi and Marchand get away with murder. Forget $5000 fines, make it a percentage of a player’s salary (that will get their attention) and an automatic minimum 1 game suspension (more of course for serious infractions). That will get their attention.

      • Wilson FINALLY got a decent suspension.

        But if he got what he should have, for past infractions, then he would have gotten 20 this time. Minimum.

    • Ahhh… the days of Mark Pavelich, Pierre Larouche, Reijo Ruotsalainen and others … the “Smurfs”!

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